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Legal & money

Help or advice needed Re:my grandson

(14 Posts)
Mark135 Sun 08-May-11 18:32:19


My grandson is 9 and he has in the past 3 years 2008,suddenly lost his Nan, my wife whom he adored and in January this year his mother who was my daughter and lived only 10 miles away whom he also adored.

Currently he is residing alone in term time, with his father 200 miles away, but a case conference last week made it clear and it was agreed his life with his father was unsatisfactory for so many reasons, including the fathers total lack of parenting skills. At the case conference, the school head said he is the most problematic child in the entire school. ( What a label.) Hence a Child Protection Plan was unanimously agreed.

My daughter couldn?t fight for permanent custody when she left the family home in 2006 because her personal problems could be used against her.

If the child Protection Plan doesn?t work I have been told, by Children's Services, he will come to me rather than be put into care. What happens to him in the meantime?

I have the back up ability and resources to look after my grandson full time, but of course as a grandparent I have no rights.

The father does not want to release him to me voluntarily and in spite of evidence regarding current and past failures of the child he will fight tooth and nail to keep my grand son. The father has no time for him and does not look after him, clothing or hygiene wise. Neither does the child have any home life except for sitting with his dad in the house listening to music or playing electronic game machines.

The child has no friends and is severely bullied at school. The only time he has any sort of life is when he comes to me 200 miles away for school holidays, when he interacts with other children and is quite a normal 9 year old.

How can I without enormous financial legal resources help my grand son and provide a permanent better life with me?

It is now the weekend and the Child Protection Plan agreed last Thursday will be brought into effect as soon as, but it is not 24/7 so even weekends or evenings, anything can occur.

I have tried Solicitors but all they refer too is the multi thousands it will cost me to pursue residency with no guaranteed outcome.

My daughter in her last will and testament, stated quite clearly she wanted my son and I to be my grand sons legal guardians on her behalf, in the event of her demise. The chances of such a request being enforced are negligible.

Please help me as I am desperate to help my grand son who has suffered as I recently discovered an intolerable upbringing since 2004 when he was 2 years old.

Only the Social Services report of last week detailed the situation of which I clearly had only partial knowledge up until now.


Notsogrand Sun 08-May-11 18:44:41

Hi Mark. What a nighmare situation for you and your grandson. I don't have any solutions, but just wanted to offer best wishes. Did the Child Protection Plan state what time frame will be used to judge if it's 'worked' ?

On Mumsnet, there are lots of social workers/solicitors/guardians ad litem etc Hopefully there will also be people on gransnet who are similarly in a position to offer information & advice.

If not, perhaps someone knows of a way to run this as a parrallel post on mumsnet?

Good luck.

Jo6jo6 Sun 08-May-11 21:01:25

Hello Mark, there are a number of questions raised in your question and some solutions you may find helpful as a starter: I would suggest that you first of all need to have an open dialogue with your grandson's social worker, this will help you understand the CP Care Plan and will give you the opportunity to find out why the care plan has been written the way it has. There is usually a timescale written into the Plan.

Whilst taking into consideration your daughter's caring wishes, you need to establish whether her ex-partner has parental rights - were they married? The internet describes Parental Rights and Responsibilities. This is needed when looking at the legal care for your grandson.

The Social Worker will be meeting and talking to the various agencies that have input into your grandson's life and the feedback will highlight concerns and needs for supports which will feed into the CP Core Group meeings and care plans, this includes observing father/child communication and interaction (and should take into account including the health and clothing of child) Some of the visits should be impromptu.

Your grandchild has had a lot of change and needs the support of the family, this includes yourself especially at this difficult time. He needs stability. Your grandchild is precious therefore any concerns you have that can be evidenced (ie. see your concerns re from 2 years old) should be passed timeously to the allocated Social Worker.

Mark, good luck!

katied Sun 08-May-11 21:02:15

May I suggest that you contact your local 'children's services' and ask for advice. I understand that you can approach them if it is in the 'best interests of the child'.

babyjack Sun 08-May-11 22:28:16

Hi Mark, It sounds like they will try and put support in place to see if it is possible for him to stay with dad. If this fails they have a legal obligation to consider other family members to care for him ie - you
It is possible for your grandson to have his own legal representation, look up the children's legal centre on line , do you know what his wishes are.
My advice would be not to spend loads on legal rep at the moment if the CPP fails then they will be hoping you will have him and they have a legal obligation to try and keep him with dad first. Try and keep a good relationship with his dad if you can as most kids still want contact with their parents however inadequate they are.
His behaviour sounds like a way of telling people how unhappy he is and also he has had a lot of loss - sounds like you have a good relationship with him. I would write to his social worker and confirm that you are willing to support him in any way - having a record on his file helps, also ask if you can have copies of his care plan as you have to care for him in the holidays. Ask them if you should apply for Parental Responsibility that would mean you would share this with his Dad if he has it, it would demonstrate your commitment to him and you could probably represent yourself and apply to the family court yourself so it may not be too costly . It is important not to let things drift so make sure that if you have any concerns you pass them to his SW and don't be afraid to ask them when the next review is and what the plan is if progress is not made. Good Luck

Mark135 Mon 09-May-11 08:03:42

I am in close contact with the school and his social worker.

I was not aware of a Children's Legal Centre but I will need to play that carefully.

Many thanks for useful advice so far.

Grumpyoldwoman Mon 09-May-11 11:31:04

No advice but just want to wish you all the best in your quest to give your grandson a stable loving home.
He is a lucky boy to have you fighting for him. Good Luck.

Lavender Mon 09-May-11 12:28:07

Hi Mark

You may want to contact Family Rights Group Helpline
0808 801 0366 for some excellent advice.

FRGAdvice Mon 09-May-11 12:32:17

Dear Mark,

I work for a charity called Family Rights Group, we specialise in giving advice to families who are involved with, or need children's social care services.

We run a free and confidential advice service. and often speak to grandparents in a situation similar to your own.

Our advisers will be able to give you practical advice as well as detailed information about your legal options. You can phone us between 10am - 3.30pm on 0808 801 0366, or email us on: [email protected]

Alternatively, you may want to look at the information on our website

all best,


GtGran Thu 12-May-11 15:00:25

My advice and this after considerable experience in your position is to contact organisations which offer support and advice. Grandparents Plus and Family Rights group.
Because of the worrying factors of any Child Protection Plan and the ways in which social services can and are frequently seen fail to follow their duty of care It does fall to you to be extremely vigilant and keep vcopies of everything above else stay in contact with your grandson and do not fail to keep a legible diary.
The importance of being definite about the passage of time causing more emotional damage cannot be understated and also regular attendance at Child Protection meetings and reviews. These children slip through cracks.But he will always know YOU cared.

amma Fri 13-May-11 11:34:04

The Grandparents' Association might be able to help you, but you need to join their society first. (

My feeling is that unless you can categorically prove that the child's father is unfit to be a parent, then it will be a battle to get custody of your grandchild. I do wish you all the best.

GadaboutGran Sat 28-May-11 13:32:06

I can't help on the legal issues but I do wonder if he has received any bereavement help for all his complex losses & the way he is, not surprisingly, expressing his feelings through is behaviour. Even if it's hard to get this to him directly, you can make a start by gaining information and support for yourself from the excellent websites of organisations like WInston's Wish and the Child bereavement Charity. It sounds like the school Head needs to be pointed in the right direction too - a lot of help is also available for Schools so they understand how they can help or at least not make matters worse.

I do hope you find a way through this terrible situation. Good luck.

Babette Wed 01-Jun-11 20:38:11

@ Mark

Mark I work as a volunteer at the CAB. We have great resources to help on all issues, It would not possible here to give you all the advice that is availiable to you. Please drop in to your CAB. All the best.

Maniac Sat 17-Sep-11 12:55:42

,I have just read your very sad story.My heart goes out to you.
There are many grandparents denied contact with their grandchildren.
If you follow the trail 'Am I being unreasonable '>'Cut out of their lives' you will find some of our stories.
Losing your wife and your daughter must have deeply affected you and your
Is there a Grandparents Support group in your area?
I have just found one and hope to attend next meeting if only for mutual support and latest information resources.
I do hope you are making some progress
My thoughts are with you.